Last weekend, NC State played Florida State and left Tallahassee with a 31-13 loss. It was one of those weird games where the game was a lot closer than the score would indicate - and for some the 18 point loss was more encouraging than the win against Ball State the week before.
The Wolfpack is now on a bye week which will, hopefully, give this team an opportunity to get a few things figured out. Let’s take a look at those first five games of the season and see how playing time and production has been trending across the different positions on the field.
There has been a lot written about the QB situation so I don’t want to do a deep dive here. McKay just hasn’t been getting it done and it sounds like Hockman and Leary will both get a good look during this bye week. I think we’re all interested to see what the QB position looks like this Thursday against Syracuse.
- What was once a young but deep stable of RBs has quickly become a concern with the top two guys getting hurt. Ricky Person’s injury on Saturday did not look good and will likely be out an extended period of time. Bam Knight was limited due to an injury he picked up the week before against Ball State. Jordan Houston has been very good this year, but can he thrive as the lead back?
- Speaking of Houston, he did get the start against FSU.
- Trent Pennix played a season high 24 snaps but did not get a carry.
- Last week I mentioned how little production we had seen from Devin Carter despite getting the second most snaps at WR. This week he had a break out game where he was the leader at the position in snaps, catches, and yards. Maybe a change at QB is all Carter needed to jumpstart his NC State career.
- Max Fisher also had the biggest game of his young career so it’s unfortunate he didn’t get a TD to cap it off.
- True freshman Cecil Powell has played well since moving to WR from defensive back a couple of games ago.
- Hopefully, this group gets rid of its case of the dropsies over the bye week.
- Cary Angeline already has more receptions and yards than he had all of last season despite having no offensive stats against Ball State.
- Parham got the first start of his career.
- Gibson Fedd-Jackson, and Sculthorpe played every offensive snap.
- McGirt is still starting, but Ikey Ekwonu got far more snaps on Saturday.
- It’s already been highlighted, but what a game for Big Murch.
- It is good to have Smith-Williams back even though he didn’t make it into the box score.
- Last week I lamented the lack of stats from Val Martin (1 tackle on 112 snaps), so he went out and had a 3 tackle effort against the Noles.
- Xavier Lyas continues to put up impressive numbers. He has the second most sacks on the team even though he gets the least number of snaps on the defensive line.
- Louis Acceus and Payton Wilson tied for the team lead in tackles versus Florida State with 7 each.
- The LBs seem to be getting better since their poor performance at West Virginia.
- Griffin and Baker-Williams continue to split the snaps at nickel with Griffin starting and TBW getting slightly more playing time.
- It hasn’t been perfect, but the play from the nickel position continues to be much improved over last year.
- Jarius Morehead was back to putting up the kind of production we’ve to come to expect from him. 5 tackles (2 off the team lead) while only playing half the defensive snaps.
- Tanner Ingle is such an aggressive player and I love the big hits, but against Florida State we saw the downside of that aggressiveness. His personal foul late in the first half was costly.
- Chris Ingram continues to be the teams best corner.
- Nick McCloud is still out with an injury and the Pack desperately needs him to get back and healthy.
- Doeren mentioned that Taiyon Palmer was injured against the Noles, but I’ve not heard any update on how severe it is.
Against Florida State, the Pack had seven freshmen who crossed beyond the 4 games played barrier and are no longer eligible to redshirt. I’m interested to see if a player like Jakeen Harris plays next week since he has mostly been a special teams player to this point.